FPV is one of my ultimate goals flying a quadcopter. The quadcopter FPV videos are just so amazing! You need at least a video receiver, transmitter and a camera for the FPV system, and it could get quite expensive. I really want to get a feel of flying FPV, and I happen to have a Bluetooth Wireless camera hanging around from my previous Wall-E project. So I decided to do some modifications and turn it into a FPV system for my little beetle v929 quadcopter.
You can also use a camera to pair with a 5.8GHz Video Transmitter and Receiver. The type of camera you can use depends on what voltage you can provide, also the weight your quadcopter can carry. For the v929 quadcopter which runs on 3.3V, it’s possible to use a Spy Key chain camera (e.g. 808 #16) or a mini security camera (e.g. MC495A). I will describe the detail later in this post.
Update: For an even better solution, check my new FPV system post.
Bluetooth Wireless Camera Modification
The bluetooth camera has a 3.3V battery attached, since I can supply that directly from the quadcopter battery, I should remove it to reduce the weight.
I also made a battery adapter to split the battery voltage supply into two. The original battery is soldered to a male connector, so I can still use it with the camera in other projects.
After the mod, the camera weights 22 grams.
Attach this camera to the quadcopter, so video taken from the quadcopter can be displayed on the computer.
This is the result. First 20 sec of the video shows the unloaded flying quadcopter, later the camera is loaded, and you can see the movement is slowed down a lot. It began to get difficult to stay in altitude because of the weight.
Also the quality is not very satisfying, bad latency and frame rate is low. We should come up with a better solution, and the weight should come first in consideration.
Keychain Camera or Mini Security Camera Modification
While the mini security camera (MC495A) amazingly only weights 3 grams (claimed by product description, i have not verified this).
For Video transmitters and receivers, you can also consider these parts suggested by Benji.
- 2S 7.2v 3000mah lipo to power the monitor and receiver = £10
- RC305 Video Receiver = £15
- TX5823 200mw 5.8ghx module from ebay = £15
- N4001 diode for the video transmitter TX5823, to reduce th 3.7-4.2V of the fully charged lipo, to 3.3v to avoid burn out.
- RG316 pigtail with RPSMA connectors. Hacked this to make the antenna, soldered outer shield cable to ground, centre cable to antenna. = £2
The overall system costed about $110, which is not bad for a simple quadcopter FPV system. Here he shows his reult.